Brumbies start Toomua at 12 against Lions

The Brumbies have named their Super Rugby team to play the Lions in Johannesburg at Emirates Airline (Ellis) Park and have brought Matt Toomua straight in at centre.

Toomua was expected to return to the team at 10 which would shift Christian Lealiifano out to 12 but the Brumbies have kept Lealiifano at 10 and started Toomua at 12.

There is also a first start for Allan Alaalatoa in the front row at loosehead prop. Alaalatoa has featured heavily off the bench this season and played the bulk of last week’s game at loose-head, but Saturday’s start provides the young prop with an opportunity to stable the scrum which was heavily penalized last outing.

The pair’s inclusion pushes JP Smith and Robbie Coleman from the starting side. An eight man bench will be named closer to the game.

Like Alaalatoa, Toomua will look for a massive performance having been out of the side through an ankle injury for the best part of a month.

“It was a little bit lonely flying over by myself but I got some sleep and I’m good to go,” Toomua said.

“I needed to be at home just for that extra week to get my ankle right but it’s feeling good and I’ve been given the all clear so I’ll be playing this weekend.

“The Lions are an exciting team to watch. They love playing from their own end, they love quick line-outs and off loads, which is unorthodox for a South African side which would usually be so dominant at set piece and go from there.”


1. Allan Alaalatoa , 2. Stephen Moore (c) , 3. Ben Alexander , 4. Rory Arnold , 5. Sam Carter , 6. Scott Fardy , 7. David Pocock , 8. Ita Vaea , 9. Nic White , 10. Christian Lealiifano , 11. Joe Tomane , 12. Matt Toomua , 13. Tevita Kuridrani , 14. Henry Speight , 15. Jesse Mogg

Replacements : 16. Josh Mann-Rea , 17. JP Smith , 18. Ruan Smith , 19. Jordan Smiler , 20. Jarrad Butler , 21. Michael Dowsett , 22. James Dargaville , 23. Robbie Coleman , 23. Nigel Ah Wong

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